Some favourites from the 101 Dumbest Moments in E-Business History:
4: In November 2000, the Internet Underground Music Archive — a.k.a. IUMA.com — posts the following on its website: “Ladies and Gentlemen, we are overjoyed to present you with the ten winners of our ‘Name Your Baby IUMA’ Contest. Congratulations to these bold, beautiful babies — Iuma Thornhill, Iuma Ross, Iuma Becht, Iuma Carlton, Iuma Farish, Iuma Devi, Iuma Godfrey, Iuma Daigre, Iuma Radnedge and Iuma Hebert!” Each baby is guaranteed $5,000 (and, presumably, a childhood full of schoolyard beatings).
12: In October 1998, an e-commerce software vendor launches with the name Accompany, which, when said aloud, sounds exactly like “a company.” As in “Hi, I’m calling from Accompany.” “Which company?” “Accompany.” And so forth.
31:Boo, Part III: Founders Ernst Malmsten and Kajsa Leander begin spending their venture capital booty. The New York Times later breaks down their expenditures, which include $150,000 annual salaries for the founders, plus $100,000 apiece to rent apartments in London and another $100,000 to redecorate them; $654,100 on promotional giveaways like disposable cameras and snow globes; $600,000 in public relations fees to the firm of Hill & Knowlton (mostly for setting up lunches with fashion editors); a $42 million ad campaign; a staff of 420 people, a.k.a the boocrew, housed in offices spanning from New York to Paris to Munich to Stockholm; and $5,000 per day to a crew of fashion consultants and hairstylists to perfect the look of Miss Boo, the site’s computer-animated mascot …
59: Utek, a business development company that finds, acquires, develops, and finances university technology for its customers, issues the following warning in its prospectus: “Our management has limited experience operating a business, has had no experience in managing and operating a business development company, and has little or no experience in corporate finance and corporate mergers.”
62: An uninhabitable, fire-damaged Silicon Valley house sells for more than $1.5 million.